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Shots - Health Blog
4:32 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

Fast Tests Are Latest Weapons Against Infections

A new lab test could quickly detect methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, bacteria like these in the blood.
Janice Carr CDC

Originally published on Fri June 29, 2012 8:42 pm

Show up at the emergency room or your doctor's office with symptoms of a serious infection, and there's a good chance you'll get an antibiotic. You might even get a few.

But antibiotics don't work on viruses. And a particular antibiotic may be suited for one kind of germ, but not another.

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Around the Nation
4:25 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

Obama Visits Colorado In Wake Of Fires

Originally published on Fri June 29, 2012 10:26 pm

President Obama visited Colorado Springs on Friday to survey the damage caused by the Waldo Canyon fire, which burned more than 300 homes.

Animals
4:17 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

Wild Mustangs Give Patrol Horsepower On The Border

Border Patrol Agent Bobbi Schad pets a mustang at the agency's training facility in Willcox, Ariz., last August.
Joshua Lott Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Fri June 29, 2012 10:26 pm

It's all new for Achilles: his name, his horseshoes, the surroundings at his home near Nogales, Ariz.

"To break 'em from what they're focusing on, you want to turn 'em from one side to the next," Border Patrol agent Luis Navarro says as he carefully leads Achilles into a round training arena.

Navarro holds the mustang by a short lead, and teaches it commands to trot and to slow down.

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Health Care
4:17 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

How Health Law's Taxes, Penalties Will Be Enforced

Originally published on Fri June 29, 2012 10:26 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

We're going to try to break down now just what those penalties will be for those who don't buy health insurance. The Congressional Budget Office projects in the year 2016 four million people will pay the penalty. I'm joined now by Timothy Jost. He's law professor at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia, and he's been looking into these numbers. We should say, Professor Jost, first off, you are also a supporter of the Affordable Care Act, right?

TIMOTHY JOST: That's correct, yes.

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It's All Politics
4:05 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

'Tax' Designation That Saved Health Care Law Being Used To Fight Obama

President Obama waves after signing the Affordable Care Act at the White House on March 23, 2010.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 3, 2012 11:39 am

In 2009, as President Obama was trying to convince Congress to pass his health care legislation, he stridently refused to characterize as a "tax" the penalty that would be imposed for not obtaining insurance under the law's individual mandate.

On Thursday, Chief Justice John Roberts begged to differ — while using the tax classification to save Obama's signature domestic accomplishment by a single Supreme Court vote.

And Republicans pounced.

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The Two-Way
4:01 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

Justice Will Not Prosecute Holder For Contempt Of Congress

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.
Gerardo Mora Getty Images

The United States Justice Department said it will not prosecute Attorney General Eric Holder for contempt of Congress.

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Health
3:44 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

Sole Abortion Clinic In Miss. Fights Law To Stay Open

Abortion opponents demonstrate outside Mississippi's only abortion clinic in Jackson.
Rogelio V. Solis AP

Originally published on Fri June 29, 2012 10:26 pm

A new Mississippi law requires doctors who perform abortions in the state to be board-certified OB-GYNs. They also must have privileges to admit patients at a local hospital.

The law is regulatory in nature, but at a bill-signing ceremony in April, Mississippi Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves was clear about the intent.

"We have an opportunity today with the signing of this bill to end abortion in Mississippi," he said.

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Asia
2:34 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

A Portrait Of Chinese Corruption, In Rosy Pink

Artist and filmmaker Zhang Bingjian sits in his Beijing studio in front of his Hall of Fame — portraits of corrupt Chinese officials. He has commissioned portraits of 1,600 officials convicted of corruption.
Angie Quan NPR

Originally published on Fri June 29, 2012 10:26 pm

Corruption is usually thought to be a bad thing. But in China, the answer is no longer crystal clear.

For decades, the country's Communist Party has declared that corruption threatens its very survival. But there are signs that this is changing. Recently, the state-run media have begun arguing that corruption can't be stamped out, so it should be contained to acceptable levels. And some corruption appears to be tacitly condoned.

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The Two-Way
1:31 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

House Passes Bill That Will Keep Student Loans Interests From Rising

Originally published on Fri June 29, 2012 2:19 pm

By a vote of 373-52, the House passed a massive bill that among other things keeps the interest rate on student loans from doubling on July 1.

"The U.S. House of Representatives passed a massive bill on Friday combining funding for transportation programs, low-interest student loans, and the National Flood Insurance Program," the Reuters reports.

The Washington Post reports:

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The Two-Way
1:31 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

Chief Justice's Critics Don't Understand What Judges Do, Gonzales Says

Sept. 29, 2005: Then-Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, at lower right, watches as Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts speaks after being sworn in.
Win McNamee Getty Images

Conservative critics who say that Chief Justice John Roberts is some kind of traitor to their movement because he was the deciding vote in favor of upholding the Obama administration's Affordable Care Act "don't understand how these judges are supposed to discharge their responsibilities," Bush-era Attorney General Alberto Gonzales told NPR this morning.

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The Two-Way
1:18 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

Assange Will Stay In Ecuadorian Embassy, Ignoring Surrender Notice

Julian Assange will defy a British Police notice to surrender. A member of his defense fund said the WikiLeaks founder will remain in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London because asylum law take precedence over an extradition order.

Saying he was afraid of persecution from the United States government and that his extradition to Sweden could hasten that, Assange has sought refuge and asylum from Ecuador.

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The Two-Way
12:53 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

Chief Justice Roberts Jokes He's Headed To 'An Impregnable Fortress'

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts.
Jim Watson AFP/Getty Images

Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts surprised the country yesterday by siding with the liberal wing of the court in the health care decision.

Roberts was appointed by President George W. Bush and has reliably taken conservative positions. But after yesterday's decision, you can bet his welcome from conservatives who saw him as a hero has chilled.

Speaking to a conference of judges and lawyers outside of Pittsburg, Roberts acknowledged his predicament.

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World
12:52 pm
Fri June 29, 2012

Will Reforms End Myanmar Monks' Spiritual Strike?

Buddhists donate food and other necessities to monks as a way of earning merit for future lives. Monks have refused donations of alms from the military as a political protest in 1990 and 2007, a boycott that some monks insist is still in effect.
Ye Aung Thu AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 29, 2012 10:26 pm

In response to political reforms in Myanmar — also known as Burma — the U.S. and other Western countries have eased some sanctions targeting the country's former military rulers.

But so far, one of the most powerful institutions inside the country has kept its sanctions in place. For some time, Myanmar's Buddhist clergy have effectively been on a spiritual strike by refusing to take donations from the military — a serious blow to the former regime's legitimacy.

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Law
11:56 am
Fri June 29, 2012

Gonzales On Chief Justice's Surprising Decision

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

We want to get another angle on yesterday's Supreme Court decision on health care. The health care law would not have survived without the support of Chief Justice John Roberts. That support was surprising to many people, perhaps even shocking. He'd been seen as a solid conservative vote in the court but this week two opinions are making people rethink that: yesterday's health care decision and one earlier this week striking down much of Arizona's immigration enforcement law.

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Politics
11:56 am
Fri June 29, 2012

Former AG On Eric Holder Contempt Vote

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

I'm Michel Martin and this is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. Coming up, we're going to take a look at elections in Mexico, but first, we're going to continue our conversation on some of the big news in this country.

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Latin America
11:56 am
Fri June 29, 2012

Is Drug War Issue Overrated In Mexico Elections?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Now we turn to presidential politics in Mexico. Americans are not the only people electing a new president this year. Mexicans are heading to the voting booth on Sunday. The frontrunner is Enrique Pena Nieto of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, also known as the PRI. That party dominated politics in Mexico for decades until a relatively recent time. The candidate in second place is Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador. He is with the Democratic Revolution Party.

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Sports
11:56 am
Fri June 29, 2012

Foul Play At Euro 2012 From Racist Fans

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Switching gears now to a subject that also inspires passion around the world, the finals are set at Euro 2012. That's Europe's big national team soccer tournament. It's being held in Ukraine and Poland this year. Italy got into the final, thanks to two goals from the striker, Mario Balotelli.

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Law
11:56 am
Fri June 29, 2012

What Does Health Care Decision Mean For Patients?

Transcript

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is TELL ME MORE from NPR News. I'm Michel Martin. My thanks to Viviana Hurtado for sitting in for me for a couple of days this week. Coming up we'll ask former attorney general Alberto Gonzales what he makes of the fact that the current attorney general Eric Holder has been declared in contempt of Congress. This is the first time that this has happened to a sitting attorney general.

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'It's All Politics': NPR's Weekly News Roundup
11:45 am
Fri June 29, 2012

It's All Politics, June 28, 2012

A landmark decision by the Supreme Court on health care reverberates across the nation — and now comes the political implications. NPR's Ron Elving and guest host Don Gonyea break down the ruling and what it means for November.

Plus, the House votes to hold the attorney general in contempt of Congress. And a review of key primary races.

The Two-Way
11:10 am
Fri June 29, 2012

Stockton, Calif., Files For Bankruptcy

Among the projects that have helped put Stockton in the red: this downtown multiplex, which opened in 2003 and cost $15 million in public and private money.
Ian Hill KQED

The city of Stockton, Calif., has officially filed for Chapter 9 bankruptcy protection, The Stockton Record writes.

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Shots - Health Blog
10:56 am
Fri June 29, 2012

Supreme Court Health Care Ruling Prompts Foot Race In Press Corps

Mark Wilson Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 29, 2012 6:37 pm

There were winners and losers in the journalistic race to get out the news of the Supreme Court's momentous ruling upholding the administration's health care law Thursday.

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Around the Nation
10:47 am
Fri June 29, 2012

How To Avoid Bankruptcy (If You're A City)

A headline in The Record newspaper in Stockton, Cailf., tells the story of the city's plan for operating under Chapter 9 bankruptcy protection following failed talks with bondholders and labor unions.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

The city of Stockton, Calif., filed for federal bankruptcy protection Thursday, becoming the largest city in U.S. history to do so.

Some worry it's part of a wave. Six other municipalities have filed for bankruptcy protection this year. That's roughly on track with last year's pace, which saw 13 bankruptcies — the most in two decades.

A wave of municipal bankruptcies could be the country's next big financial crisis, several Wall Street analysts have warned.

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The Two-Way
10:41 am
Fri June 29, 2012

On The Morning After, Who's The Winner Is Everybody's Guess

Susan Clark (left) argues with another protester about the Affordable Care Act outside the U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday.
Kris Connor Getty Images

Originally published on Fri June 29, 2012 12:38 pm

Figuring out who benefits most politically from Thursday's Supreme Court decision that upheld the constitutionality of President Obama's health care overhaul seems to be today's toughest assignment.

On It's All Politics, our colleague Frank James says it's "difficult to overstate how big a win" it was for Obama.

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Planet Money
9:46 am
Fri June 29, 2012

A Baby Step Toward A United States Of Europe

Spot the metaphor.
Oli Scarff Getty Images

Originally published on Mon July 2, 2012 10:20 am

If the euro is to survive, the eurozone needs to be more like one country, and less like a bunch of different countries that happen to sit on the same continent.

European leaders just took a baby step in that direction. They agreed to create a banking union. Like many things in global finance, this sounds boring but is actually a pretty big deal.

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Movie Reviews
9:37 am
Fri June 29, 2012

A Boy And His Bear, At Large In A Man's World

Ted (voiced by writer-director Seth MacFarlane) and Johnny (Mark Wahlberg) share a laugh in Ted. The talking teddy bear got his powers when 8-year-old Johnny wished upon a falling star for Ted to speak.
Universal Pictures/Tippett Studio

Originally published on Fri June 29, 2012 10:26 pm

Seth MacFarlane is known mostly for creating, writing and directing the animated TV show Family Guy. In the show, he also voices Peter and Stewie Griffin, and their dog, Brian.

With his new movie, Ted, he has moved to the big screen for the first time, again creating, writing and directing. And though it's a live-action picture, he has again voiced one of the characters — the titular teddy bear, whom I tried to resist but couldn't.

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